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Dumb, Dumber and Dumbest

LONDON: September 29, 2016. The British "Silly Season" is usually in August when politicians and corporate leaders take a vacation and the media hacks left holding the News Desk get their revenge by piling on the garbage.

However this year it's hard to know when the season began – and if it will end.

Dumb, Dumber and Dumbest, the three Brexit politicians determined to drag Britain over an economic and social cliff after lying to an ill-informed electorate, are now joined on the other side of the Atlantic by "Trumped Up, Trickle Down" half-truths from an equally disingenuous self-promoter.

Unfortunately the media and its ancillary pundits continue to supply all these egotists with the attention they crave – effectively displacing rational thought with rancid ideology.

Meanwhile UK business leaders, refreshed from their vacations, are busy planning for the worst according to KPMG. This could be good news for Ireland, Luxembourg, Belgium and other EU countries as British businesses Brexit.

Boris Johnson has made no secret of his opposition to a third runway at Heathrow. Gutting the UK economy to ensure there's no money to pay for it seems an unnecessary high price to pay.

Talking about price, this week Britain's Institute For Government said preparing for Brexit could cost the UK taxpayer £65 million plus the hiring of 500 more civil servants - while the three ministers responsible for implementing the expected chaos waste time squabbling.

A report from authors Hannah White and Jill Rutter note there is "a gaping void" of information about how the UK government intends to reach a negotiating position with the EU.

White adds: "Silence is not a strategy. The current situation – where we are left to interpret personal musings of individual ministers – is frustrating those looking for an early exit, perplexing those with whom we have to negotiate, and unsettling those looking to do business in the UK.

"The prime minister has sworn she will not give a running commentary on negotiations, but she needs rapidly to clarify how and when the government intends to go about making decisions on Brexit."

Or as a recent comment in The Guardian newspaper observed about Liam Fox, Britain's secretary for International Trade: "The only guaranteed opportunity this seems to offer is the opportunity to prepare for his next collapse in judgment."

- Simon Keeble is the editorial director of Freightweek

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